Trip Type : Small Group Tour
Cycle Macedonia & Northern Albania tour
Cultural Culture Cycle Macedonia & Northern Albania package
Cycling Cycling Cycle Macedonia & Northern Albania package

Cycle Macedonia & Northern Albania

Exodus Travels Premier
Has very high quality customer experiences and demonstrated commitment to responsible travel practices. read more
4.6 . Excellent
99%
Travel Style: You will have solid amounts of both free time and structured time with some activities and meals included. Mixed
Physical Level: Regular walking or cycling over moderately long, hilly, or bumpy distances. Some public transport or utility vehicles such as safari jeeps. Moderate
Lodging Level: Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value - 3 star
8 days
From: $ 1,349 $ 169 / day
Checking price

Overview

Highlights

  • Cycle along the Black Drin Valley
  • Enjoy spectacular scenery at Komani Lake
  • Visit the UNESCO town of Ohrid

Short Description

The border lands of Northern Albania and Western Macedonia are truly one of the last hidden gems of Europe. Sweeping gorges are carved by crystal blue waters that flow into tranquil lakes, whilst rocky peaks and plateaux rise high above the lush green landscape. Ancient villages, rarely visited by tourists nestle themselves into the valleys, some of which retain a way of life that has been unchanged for centuries. Our carefully chosen route heads through some of the best scenery these fascinating countries have to offer, complimented with some really exciting cycling that equally challenges and rewards.Cycle through Macedonia and North Albania, the last hidden gems of Europe.

Small groups are usually defined as between 10 and 24 travelers, often less. If you're the kind of person who enjoys more intimate experiences and personal service this is a good choice. All else being equal you will pay a premium for this style vs a larger group tour.
Trip Type Small Group Tour
Spend most of the time outdoors. Common trip themes and activities include cycling, hiking, kayaking, whitewater rafting.
Itinerary Focus Active
Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels.
Lodging Level Value - 3 star
Flights & Transport Only ground transport
Start City Shkoder
End City Pogradec

Travel Theme

Cultural Cycling & Biking

Destinations

Albania Macedonia

Cities & Attractions

N/A

Activities

Culture Cycling

Age Requirement

16

No Single Supplement
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Trip Includes

  • All breakfasts, 6 lunches and 2 dinners included
  • All accommodation
  • Transfer for group flights
  • Local bike hire

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Itinerary

Flight Inclusive

Day 1 Fly to Tirana; transfer to Shkoder in Northern Albania

Depart London; arrive Tirana and transfer to Shkoder in Northern Albania (approx. 1.5hrs drive). *Comfortable Hotel*

Day 2 Transfer to Komani Lake; ferry ride from Komani to Fierze (3hrs). Cycle through gorges, forests and lakes to Dardhe

After an early transfer to Komani we take a ferry to Fierze across the beautiful Komani Lake (which takes about 3 hours). The ferry ride allows you to take in the spectacular scenery, winding its way between high cliffs and towering peaks. From here we get on our bikes and the climbing begins as we ascend from the lake up to a high plateau. Following the line of an ancient trade route, along which the Romans built one of their great arterial roads, the Via Publica, we cycle up through spectacular gorges, forests and lakes towards Dardhe. Cycle approx. 40km, ascent 1175m, descent 500m. *Standard Hotel*

Day 3 Cycle along spectacular mountain roads with high peaks on your left and Fierze lake 800m below on your right; continue to Kukes

Today we will cycle one of the most spectacular roads in Albania with high mountain peaks on your left and Fierza Lake, 800m down on your right. We continue along Fierza Lake until we reach the dam, which is part of a huge hydro-electric system constructed in the 1970's. Cycle approx. 81km, ascent 1500m, descent 1950m. *Comfortable Hotel*

Day 4 Ride to Peshkopi along the Black Drin Valley

Today we cycle along the Black Drin Valley from Kukes to Peshkopi, following the river. The Black Drin River originates at Lake Ohrid and meets with the White Drin River at Kukes. This is the toughest day of the trip and includes a 12km climb. Cycle approx. 73km, ascent 2000m, descent 1700m. *Comfortable Hotel*

Day 5 Cross the border into Macedonia and on to the UNESCO town of Ohrid; afternoon city tour

After riding past farms and villages our route passes over into Macedonia. We then continue through the Macedonian countryside until we reach the beautiful UNESCO town of Ohrid. After checking in to the hotel we will head out on a city tour through the town famed for its 365 churches, one for each day of the year. Ohrid itself is situated on the shores of Lake Ohrid, with winding cobbled streets and traditional Macedonian architecture that you will find in the old town. There is the option to take a city tour with a local guide for approximately €3 per person (price dependent on the size of the group). Cycle approx. 93km, ascent 900m, descent 900m. *Comfortable Hotel*

Day 6 Climb to rocky plateau above Ohrid; ride over passes before descending to Big Prespa Lake in Stenje

In the morning we start cycling along the lake before another 12km climb to a rocky plateau with wonderful views of Lake Ohrid. We then have a long descent to the shores of Lake Prespa, where there’s time for a swim. Cycle approx. 52km, ascent 1350m, descent 1200m. *Standard Hotel*

Day 7 Cycle along the shores of the lake to Small Prespa Lake, bordering Albania, Greece and Macedonia; crossing the border back into Albania, pass Lake Ohrid en route to Pogradec

Our route today follows the shores of the larger Prespa Lake and also the smaller Prespa Lake that borders three countries (Albania, Macedonia and Greece). Once past these lakes on the southern side we reach Lake Ohrid and eventually Pogradec in Albania. There is then a chance for a relaxing afternoon at the bay in front of the hotel. Cycle approx. 75km, ascent 900m, descent 1050m. *Comfortable Hotel*

Day 8 Transfer to Tirana; fly to London

End Pogradec. Those on the group flight will be transferred to Tirana Airport (approx. 3hrs drive). 



Land Only

Day 1 Start Shkoder in Northern Albania

Start Shkoder in Northern Albania. Those on the group flight will be met at the airport and transferred to Shkoder, one of the oldest and most historic cities in Albania, as well as an important cultural and economic center (approx. 1.5hrs drive). Please note that due to the remoteness of this tour, Shkoder is a good opportunity to make any last minute purchases, such as bike equipment or items you may have forgotten to bring with you. *Comfortable Hotel*

Day 2 Transfer to Komani Lake; ferry ride from Komani to Fierze (3hrs). Cycle through gorges, forests and lakes to Dardhe

After an early transfer to Komani we take a ferry to Fierze across the beautiful Komani Lake (which takes about 3 hours). The ferry ride allows you to take in the spectacular scenery, winding its way between high cliffs and towering peaks. From here we get on our bikes and the climbing begins as we ascend from the lake up to a high plateau. Following the line of an ancient trade route, along which the Romans built one of their great arterial roads, the Via Publica, we cycle up through spectacular gorges, forests and lakes towards Dardhe. Cycle approx. 40km, ascent 1175m, descent 500m. *Standard Hotel*

Day 3 Cycle along spectacular mountain roads with high peaks on your left and Fierze lake 800m below on your right; continue to Kukes

Today we will cycle one of the most spectacular roads in Albania with high mountain peaks on your left and Fierza Lake, 800m down on your right. We continue along Fierza Lake until we reach the dam, which is part of a huge hydro-electric system constructed in the 1970's. Cycle approx. 81km, ascent 1500m, descent 1950m. *Comfortable Hotel*

Day 4 Ride to Peshkopi along the Black Drin Valley

Today we cycle along the Black Drin Valley from Kukes to Peshkopi, following the river. The Black Drin River originates at Lake Ohrid and meets with the White Drin River at Kukes. This is the toughest day of the trip and includes a 12km climb. Cycle approx. 73km, ascent 2000m, descent 1700m. *Comfortable Hotel*

Day 5 Cross the border into Macedonia and on to the UNESCO town of Ohrid; afternoon city tour

After riding past farms and villages our route passes over into Macedonia. We then continue through the Macedonian countryside until we reach the beautiful UNESCO town of Ohrid. After checking in to the hotel we will head out on a city tour through the town famed for its 365 churches, one for each day of the year. Ohrid itself is situated on the shores of Lake Ohrid, with winding cobbled streets and traditional Macedonian architecture that you will find in the old town. There is the option to take a city tour with a local guide for approximately €3 per person (price dependent on the size of the group). Cycle approx. 93km, ascent 900m, descent 900m. *Comfortable Hotel*

Day 6 Climb to rocky plateau above Ohrid; ride over passes before descending to Big Prespa Lake in Stenje

In the morning we start cycling along the lake before another 12km climb to a rocky plateau with wonderful views of Lake Ohrid. We then have a long descent to the shores of Lake Prespa, where there’s time for a swim. Cycle approx. 52km, ascent 1350m, descent 1200m. *Standard Hotel*

Day 7 Cycle along the shores of the lake to Small Prespa Lake, bordering Albania, Greece and Macedonia; crossing the border back into Albania, pass Lake Ohrid en route to Pogradec

Our route today follows the shores of the larger Prespa Lake and also the smaller Prespa Lake that borders three countries (Albania, Macedonia and Greece). Once past these lakes on the southern side we reach Lake Ohrid and eventually Pogradec in Albania. There is then a chance for a relaxing afternoon at the bay in front of the hotel. Cycle approx. 75km, ascent 900m, descent 1050m. *Comfortable Hotel*

Day 8 End Pogradec

End Pogradec. Those on the group flight will be transferred to Tirana Airport (approx. 3hrs drive).

Availability

Checking price
Price From $ 1,349
Price Per Day: $ 169 per day
Check Availability
Checking price
Start DateFinish DateDouble StandardDeparture GuaranteedAvailability 
Aug-23-2019Aug-30-2019$ 1,479Yes4 spots left Reserve
Sep-13-2019Sep-20-2019$ 1,349Yes4 spots left Reserve
Sep-27-2019Oct-04-2019$ 1,479No8 spots left Reserve

Check Current Availability, prices, specials with Exodus Travels.

Prices may vary due to local taxes and trip seasonality. Click "Request Info" to inquire directly with the tour operator for the final trip price.

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Stride Featured in

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13,051 Exodus Travels Travel Reviews & Ratings

99%
4.6 out of 5 (100+ reviews)
Excellent 9,189
Great 3,171
Average 528
Disappointing 113
Terrible 50
Value
4.6
Guide
4.6
Activities
4.6
Lodging
4.6
Transportation
4.6
Meals
4.6

Cycle Macedonia & Northern Albania

Write a Review

WOW the best trip ever!!

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
This was my first cycle trip......sure wish I would have started doing these
treks 20 years ago. The Northern Albania/Macedonia bike ride was very
challenging....steep climbs, thrilling descents, beautiful mountains/lakes.
Our accommodations were quaint and comfortable. The food was healthy and oh
so good! I was very impressed with organized structure of this trip. Our
guide, Dimo, was the best! I made 13 new UK friends, and loved every minute
riding, dining, drinking and laughing with all of them. Exodus will by my
1st choice for traveling every year.
Making the 6,000ft cycle day


Dimo was the BEST! fun, friendly, from the area


Read more

Northern Albania and Macedonia August 2016

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
After riding the southern Albania trip last year I had to go for this one. It was a fantastic trip over the mountains with beautiful views every day, the lakes, the mountains, the valleys. It was a bit tough going at times but it was worth the effort. The scenery was quite different to the southern trip. I'm glad I did both.
Macedonia was different again. Lots of small farms with their goods on display by the roadside. Ohrid, UNESCO town was very picturesque overlooking lake Ohrid.
Climbing out of Ohrid to the plateau overlooking the Lake and seeing the tiny villages bellow.
Also for me it was making it up the steep sections on days 2 & 3 without getting off.

Our leader was very fit, he often had to drop back to help someone with a problem, then ride up to the front again.

Yes, you need to get fit riding up 10% hills (1 in 10) and be able to ride up long hills before you take the trip or you may not enjoy the tough sections so much.
Some of the shorter gradients reached 14-16% (indicated on my Garmin).
You do get some good down hill bits to recuperate, and there are stops for people to catch up.
Age is not the problem it's the fitness that counts. Ride at a speed your comfortable with, don't try to keep up.

Our trip was in late August and the weather was great, sun every day with morning rides starting at around 19deg to 30 at the end of the days ride.

Read more

Northern albania and Macedonia cycling

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
Wow - certainly a challenge, but so worth the sweat of the uphill undulations! Stunning scenery, beautiful lakes and very comfortable accommodation all the way. Go do this trip - it will push you - but it is worth it.
Getting off the bike at the end of each day knowing I'd done my best and it had been good enough. I genuinely thought I'd be in the bus, but I made it. A great team from Exodus motivated us all the way and the company was such fun. Standing on the top of some of the hills and looking down at where we'd started from was a great feeling of achievement.

Great giggle! He could out cycle everyone and make it look easy!

Get fit.................do lots of uphills in heat!

Don't expect the countries to be behind the rest of Europe - they most definitely are not. Be prepared for some children to be very capable of knowing rude words in English and also throwing sticks. The vast majority were lovely and friendly, but the odd ones were nasty - to women and men.

Read more

Albania June 2016

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
Great trip - challenging but very rewarding.
Stunning scenery throughout- way beyond expectations.

Excellent- a relatively new trip but well organised and suitably flexible where necessary.

Albania is as safe as anywhere in Europe - don't be put off by any reports to the contrary.

If you are thinking about it - do it. You will not regret going.

Read more

Company Reviews

ANTARCTIC CIRCLE QUEST

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
I was introduced to Antarctica in the most amazing way. When we arrived there
was a blanket of heavy fog the team got us on the zodiac and navigated on
compass bearings. Suddenly like the curtain of a stage being pulled back we
sat in sky of blue surrounded by a wild and pristine environment.
See above. Watching whales breech. Smelling penguins before you could see
them. Filming Leopard seals with my gopro. You truely need to be awake 24hrs
a day and have eyes in the back of your head for this trip.


Shelly and the team were amazing. Their passion and commitment and tirless
effort to show what they love and care about the most was amazing


Do take European travel plugs for Ushuaia as well as American.


Enjoy everything this trip has to offer. Remember this is an expedition and
not a five star hotel as some travellers on my trip thought. Things can go
wrong and weather is unpredictable. A real once in a lifetime trip.


Read more

ANTARCTIC CIRCLE QUEST

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
Another fantastic trip to the wilderness that is Antarctica. Brilliant from
start to finish with awesome scenery and wildlife experiences throughout on a
fantastic ship.
Experiencing the beauty of both Oraca's and Humpback whales upclose to to
zodiacs and a brillient night spent camping on the Ice of Antartctica.


Woody was excellent from start to finish, extremely knowledgeable and
passionate about Antarctica, friendly, open and worked brilliantly with
the Ships Captain/Crew to get us lots of fantastic landings and cruising
opportunities. He was ably assisted by the rest of his expedition crew who
were all also fantastic.


Go... A definite must do atleast once in your life. Antarctica is awesome.


Although some people might conside this type of trip as being expensive,
I'd qualify it by saying this was my second trip to Antarctica and
althought it is not a cheap holiday it is great value for money, I
wouldn't have returned otherwise.The Ship is fantastic, food was
excellent and all the crew were so friendly, helpful and ofcourse
knowledgeable.


Read more

Details

Flights & Transport

Only ground transport

Group Size:

Small Group - 24 max

Maximum Number of People in Group: 16

Accomodations

7 nights hotels and guesthouses
6 days cycling with 100% vehicle support
100% tarmac
Undulating route with some tough climbs and long descents
Group normally 4 to 16 plus local leader. Min age 16 yrs
E-bike hire available on request

Age Notes

Min. Age: 16

Additional Information:

  • 5 nights hotels, 2 nights guesthouses
  • 6 days cycling with full vehicle support 
  • Group normally 4 to 16, plus local cycling leader and driver. Min age 16 yrs
  • Trip can be combined with Cycling in Albania
  • E-bike hire available on request

Trip ID#:

exodus-MVO

Trip Excludes

  • Travel insurance
  • Single accommodation - GBP140
  • Airport transport for Land Only bookings

Meals Included:

Dinner: All breakfasts, 6 lunches and 2 dinners included. Under Enver Hoxha (the communist leader of Albania from 1944-1985), Albania became a self sustaining country due to its isolation to the world. However due to the lush fertile valleys, fresh mountain springs and Mediterranean climate, they are still very much a subsistence culture and show very little signs of changing. In the countryside expect your food to have been reared/grown not too far from your plate. Breakfasts are typically eggs, fresh bread, jam, honey and coffee. On some days lunches are picnic style eaten en route outside, whereas on other days we will eat in restaurants. Meat dishes are often goat or lamb, with fish dishes ranging from trout to endemic species from Lake Ohrid. Courses often come in mezze form complimented with a variety of vegetables and salad, freshly baked bread, homemade cheeses and local wines. In the cities there are a number of restaurants to choose from with an array of Mediterranean cuisine. In Macedonia you will find a similar Balkan cuisine that reflects its Mediterranean and Middle Eastern influences. A typical Macedonian dish is tavce gravce, a baked dish of beans, onions red peppers and parsley. It's a delicious dish worth trying.

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